Photo: Yaron Druckman
Haifa's Rambam hospital
Photo: Yaron Druckman

Doctor Nasrallah treats rocket injuries

Haifa's Rambam hospital patients don't know whether to laugh or cry as Doctor Haitam Nasrallah treats their injuries

At the Rambam Medical Center, Haitam Nasrallah, 28, is talked of with respect. A young, good looking man, Nasrallah spent seven years studying medicine in Italy, and is currently doing an internship in Haifa.


Doctors at the medical center are certain that his future in Haifa is bright, despite his unique name.


Soldiers and patients who encounter the name tag on the young doctor for the first time glance at it for a moment with a little curiosity and even suspicion.


They were just rushed to hospital because of Hassan Nasrallah's rockets, and now another Nasrallah awaits them in the emergency room?


But the suspicious look is very quickly replaced with a smile and even a laugh.


Doctor Haitam Nasrallah is a Christian resident of Shfaram who is planning to marry his fiancé, also a resident of Shfaram.


'I'm proud of my name'


He does not plan to change his name. "First of all because this is my name. And secondly, that one from Beirut should change his name,"
Haitam says. "Why me? Me and my family have been proudly going with this name for a number of generations. The name means 'guardian of God,' and I have no problem with it, except for these (rocket-induced) shakings."


When Nasrallah watches television with his colleagues, doctors and specialists, the Hizbullah leader appears on the screen. "Yalla (come on), talk to your cousin and tell him to stop with these missiles…" says a colleague in jest.


After one of his patients was released from hospital, he approached the doctor and said: "You can be sure, I will never forget your name…"


"Of course I hope they know me due to my work and not only because of this name," Haitam explains.


"I treat whoever arrives at the Rambam hospital, without consideration of origin, religion, or nationality. I am Israeli and I am a resident of Israel – and I'm proud of that and the wonderful relations that exist in the Rambam hospital between all of the staff and patients, without regard for race or nationality," he says.


Dozens of Israeli Arab doctors work alongside Nasrallah at the Rambam hospital: Muslims, Christians, and Druze. One of his colleagues, Doctor Hani Bahous, 42, hopes that peace in the Middle East will happen soon, and that good relations are established between all peoples, as exist in the Rambam hospital, and in Haifa generally.


And while we are conversing with Doctor Nasrallah, the air raid sirens again go off in Haifa. After receiving a number of insistent looks, Doctor Nasrallah smiles: "Okay, okay, I will call him and ask him to stop."


פרסום ראשון: 07.26.06, 11:13
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